Ai Kawashima – 24/24

June 6, 2010 at 10:00 PM | Posted in Ai Kawashima | 2 Comments
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The cover of the CD+DVD edition

24/24 is Ai Kawashima’s 5th studio album and it was released on May 26, 2010. The album reached #34 on the Oricon Weekly Charts and sold 3,787 copies.

I see you hiding behind that camera, Ai! I C U.

♦ ♦ ♦

One of Japan’s most underrated singer-songwriters, Ai Kawashima has always impressed me with her enchanting songs and her voice that I describe as nothing short of angelic. Imagewise, she’s homely but I think that’s part of her appeal (I always see her on those Oricon polls and stuff like that). Anyway, that’s why I’ve been a fan ever since her I WiSH days.

Kawashima’s latest album 24/24 proves to be one of her more enthusiastic releases with a primary focus on upbeat songs. Compared to past albums, there are fewer ballads but that’s not a problem. For example, the A-side Haru no Yume is really the album’s only true ballad. I wouldn’t count the opening track Hakobune because it’s very short (kind of like Ai Otsuka’s LOVE LETTER).

A large portion of the album is filled with catchy piano tunes including WHITE, Color, Omedetou, and Daisuki da yo. They’re all pleasant songs that radiate with Kawashima’s gentle vocals. Other notable tracks include very upbeat tracks like Ban Soko and Hakata Kiito Koiuta along with the acoustic guitar driven I got you. The album slows down near the end with mid-tempo pop songs that incorporate more strings. They don’t exactly fit into the category of ballads though. Haguruma, Eggheart, Day by day, and the final track Sakura are indeed slower paced and they sound sooooo pretty.

My favorite aspect of 24/24 is that it’s an album brimming with hope and optimism. There are seriously NO sad songs on here. Her previous albums had at least one or two of them so I was surprised. Every song is presented in an uplifting manner and the album as a whole is enjoyable to listen to. My only criticism would be that it lacks some of the variety of past albums. For instance, I felt that her last album Simple Treasure had a wider array of arrangements and instrumentation but 24/24 still ends up being the successor. For me, this is her strongest album since her debut.

Pros: The ultimate “feel good” album! =D
Cons: Besides the limited range of instruments used, I don’t have any.

BASICALLY…I highly recommend this album! Kawashima did an excellent job.

Overall Rating

4½ stars

Tracklisting

1. Hakobune (ハコブネ)
2. WHITE
3. Color
4. Haru no Yume (春の夢)
5. Ban Soko (ばんそーこ)
6. Omedetou (おめでとう)
7. Daisuki da yo (大好きだよ)
8. I got you
9. Hakata Kiito Koiuta (博多純恋歌)
10. Haguruma (歯車)
11. Eggheart
12. Day by day
13. Sakura (さくら)

Note: My favorite tracks are highlighted in blue!

2 Comments »

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  1. i agree with you, awesome album!

  2. I love ai kawashima!! However, I think her voice sounds best in sad ballads like Shigure. A pity there isn’t any in this album though, but I’ll still like every song.


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